Today I will be talking about IQ84 by Haruki Murakami, a book I finished at half past midnight and have mixed feelings about. This blog post will contain **SPOILERS**, so if you haven’t read it and are planning to do so you may wish to bail. I would offer you this counsel before you head though: if you’ve never read Murakami before, maybe don’t start here.
Haven’t done this for a while, but this week’s photo challenge is curves, which was simple to put a bookish twist on!
The book in question is Hell’s Bells by John Connolly, a sequel to his YA debute The Gates. Both are very funny and worth a look – and if you enjoy them you’ll be pleased to hear the last in the trilogy, The Creeps, is due to be published in the autumn.
Disclaimer: I’ve never read Mr Connolly’s grown up thriller type books (although I have read The Book of Lost Things, which was fun) so you can’t hold me responsible if you love Charlie Parker and don’t like these!
Lately I have been trying to read ALL THE BOOKS. This is impossible, but I am making a better fist of it that I did when I was doing the writing of the 12 books in 12 months. Here are some brief highlights of what I’ve read since the start of October. You should read all of these and tell me what you think.
- The Pirates in an Adventure with Whaling – Gideon Defoe
Made me laugh out loud several times, even better than the first in the series; ham.
- Sparks – David Quantick
Tonally a lot like Douglas Adams. Parallel universes. Jolly good fun.
- Let’s Pretend This Never Happened – Jenny Lawson
Likely to make you snort-laugh in a most unladylike fashion. A memoir of a perplexing childhood and an account of an interesting adulthood by one of the internet’s best bloggers. Worth a look if you enjoy Caitlin Moran, or if you want to laugh a lot.
- Maus – Art Spiegelman
I’m late to the party with Maus, obviously – it’s been on my to-read list for years, but I finally got around to it last month. I can’t add much to what you probably already know – it’s fascinating and horrible and heartbreaking. Read it please. The end.
- Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children – Ransom Riggs
A magical tale built around old sepia photos of freak shows. I worried this might be a little bit cheesy, especially when the American kid went to visit Wales… but it’s actually not. I’m very curious to know what happens next.
- The Sisters Brothers – Patrick De Witt
If you’re a horse lover you may wish to look away. An absorbing tale of the Wild West, but not the Will Smith kind. It is a little slow to get started, but once it gets going it is very good.
If you’ve followed this blog for a while, you might be aware that when I’m not writing I sometimes act as Media Officer for Homespun, a new children’s theatre company. Now I am cannily combining the two in the interests of raising cash to send our show, East of the Sun West of the Moon (which was pretty well received at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival this year) on tour in 2013. I am putting together an eBook of folk and fairy stories, with all proceeds going towards redevelopment and production costs. I am therefore looking for bright young things to donate their stories in the interests of supporting new children’s theatre. If you or someone you know is a bright young thing, please read on for more information…